Sunday, May 18, 2008

Best of the Genea-Blogs - May 11-17, 2008

Here are my picks for great reads from the genealogy blogs for this past week.

My criteria are pretty simple - I pick posts that advance knowledge about genealogy, address current genealogy issues, provide personal family history, are funny or are poignant. I don't list posts destined for the Carnival of Genealogy, or other meme submissions (but I do include summaries of them), or my own posts.

* "Genealogy conferences" by Ruby Coleman on the Genealogy Lines blog. Ruby tells us about her road trip with her sister-in-law around the Midwest. They had fun - that's good! They brought back lots of stuff too.

* "Steve Morse at the California Genealogical Society" by Steve Danko on Steve's Genealogy Blog. Steve describes Steve's two talks at CGS - the Jewish Calendar and Steve's own search forms. I really appreciate people who summarize talks they've heard!

* "Family Bibles: The Genesis of Most Family Research" by Kathy Jones-Kristof on the Genealogy Help and Hints blog. Kathy's article about family Bibles is a good reminder to find them if they are available, but don't sweat it if they aren't.

* "ISFHWE, manuscripts and an offer from Myrt" by Pat Richley on the DearMYRTLE blog. Pat nicely summarizes the ISFHWE winners, writes about the value of undiscovered manuscripts for researchers, and offers a web page for a scanned image and biography of an ancestor found through searching manuscripts.

* "Family History Library Catalog 2.0" by Paul Allen on the Paul Allen (the lesser) blog. This is probably the most important announcement from the NGS conference, and Paul goes beyond the press release. This is excellent news!

* "How good is census indexing?" by John D. Reid on the Anglo-Celtic Connections blog. John reviews UK census records from Ancestry and FindMyPast and discovers problems with both. Nice job, and no surprise to me!

* "FBI FOIA Electronic Reading Room" by Tim Agazio on the Genealogy Reviews Online blog. Tim tries out the FBI reading room and enjoys it - but is it a genealogy resource? I think it is, especially if you have black sheep in the family.

* "ProGen Study Group #1" by Mark Tucker on the ThinkGenealogy blog. Mark discusses his first interaction with his genealogy study group. This is one way for genealogists to grow professionally. I'm part of this same group, and there are several others.

* "Swappin' Haircuts, Droppin' Knives, Pitchin' the Crack, Pullin' Bottles and Other Useful Skills" by Terry Thornton on the Hill Country of Monroe County, Mississippi blog. Terry has the best, and most, stories about growing up! It sounds like it was fun to be a kid in rural Mississippi. Frankly, it was fun to be a kid almost anywhere in the 1950's, wasn't it?

* "May 16 - Friday from the Collectors: The Future of Memories" by Denise Olson on footnoteMaven's Shades of the Departed blog. Denise shares her tech-savvy outlook on how we will share memories in the future as a guest "presenter" on fM's blog. I've had this blog on my list every week since it started - and for good reason! Are you reading it?

I encourage you to go to the blogs listed above and read their articles, and add their blog to your Favorites, Bloglines, reader, feed or email if you like what you read. Please make a comment to them also - we all appreciate feedback on what we write.

I now have 280 genealogy blogs on my Bloglines list and I try hard to read at least the content that show up on Bloglines. I set it for "Complete Entries," but many posts only show me a limited part of the post because of how the poster feeds it to the world. I wish people would provide the full content to their posts so that I can read all of it! If it doesn't "grab me" with what I see, I don't read the rest of it. The purpose of feeds, readers and Bloglines is to provide an easier way to view content without excessive clicks. I understand the desire to have readers visit your site, but it's self-defeating in many cases.

Did I miss a great genealogy blog post? Tell me!


Terry Thornton said...

RANDY, Thanks for the kind words and the link. Growing up in the rural south in the 1940s and 1950s (I was born in 1939) was, for me, a great time to explore and to learn. I think that you and I are fortunate to have had our start in those steady comfortable years of the 1950s --- you in an urban region and me in the hills. Those were the years.

Tim Agazio said...

Randy, Thanks for the link! You are right, I did enjoy the FBI Electronic Reading Room...I love reading raw history. Unfortunately, none of the black sheep in my family climbed the ranks high enough to rate the attention of the FBI.

Tim Agazio

Anonymous said...


I'm all for full feeds, too. I can't actually access blogs in work, but I like to catch up with Google Reader during lunch. Without a full feed, I might note an article if the first sentence grabs me, but with full feed you get my whole attention every time.


footnoteMaven said...


As a daily reader and ardent admirer of Genea-Musings I want to thank you for your link and very kind words about Shades of The Departed.

If I get to California in June let's do a bloggers lunch!